Asbury Park shows solidarity after Orlando mass shooting

There have been at least three vigils held in Asbury Park since the massacre in Orlando.

There have been at least three vigils held in Asbury Park since the massacre in Orlando. (6/13/16)

ASBURY PARK - As more information about the attack in Orlando comes to light, many New Jersey residents are showing their support and remembering the victims. 

There have been at least three candlelight vigils held in Asbury Park since the shooting, and American flags all over town are flying at half-staff to remember the victims.

Members of Asbury Park’s large LGBT community say that they are standing in solidarity with the community in Orlando.

Outside the popular gay bar Georgie’s, a makeshift memorial stands to honor the victims. It is made with candles from the vigils, along with a single rose. Christopher Gonzales, the owner of the Chat and Nibble restaurant, says that he and other gay people who attended the vigils are left feeling vulnerable.

“It could have happened in a gay bar, it could have happened here in Asbury Park,” Gonzales says. “That’s the scary part of it.”

Gonzalez was supposed to be in Orlando this past weekend to visit family, but says that he canceled the trip at the last minute for work. He says that he would have been partying at Pulse, where the shooting happened, if he had gone down.

“It could've been me. It could've been anybody, your sister, your mother, anybody. It’s very tragic,” he says.

A drag show scheduled for Friday night at Paradise, Asbury Park’s largest gay club, will benefit the families of the victims.

There are many vigils and benefits scheduled across New Jersey, including a candlelight vigil in Red Bank on Wednesday.

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